The Great Miles Getaway

Philippine Airline gives away 50% off on there Mabuhay miles redemption

THE GREAT MILES GETAWAY IS BACK!!

Miles at 50% OFF for your grand getaway!!
A GREAT way to start your New Year!!
On a limited run, we have lowered the redemption values to selected PAL international destinations, HALF the Miles required.
Tickets may be booked and issued starting:  27 January 2009
until 05 February 2009.
Travel Period: 01 February 2009 – 15 March 2009.
GREAT MILES GETAWAY Redemption Values
Booking and Ticketing: 27 January 2009 – 05 February 2009
Travel Period: 01 February 2009 – 15 March 2009
MANILA TO/FROM FIESTA “O” CLASS MABUHAY “R” CLASS
Macau, Xiamen, Taipei, Hong Kong**
7,500 Miles
12,500 Miles
Singapore, Bangkok, Jakarta, Shanghai, Beijing,Nagoya, Fukuoka, Osaka,
Ho Chi Minh, Guam
10,000 Miles
17,500 Miles
Australia** (Sydney, Melbourne)
20,000 Miles
32,500 Miles
CEBU TO/FROM FIESTA “O” CLASS MABUHAY “R” CLASS
Tokyo
10,000 Miles
17,500 Miles
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ILOILO

ILOILO, the largest province in Panay Island of the Western Visayas Region, is divided into 42 municipalities & 1 component city, composed of 1,721 brgys. with Iloilo City as the provincial capital.  Iloilo takes its name from Irong-Irong, the old name of the city of Iloilo, a tongue of land that sitcks out like a nose on the south side of the Iloilo River.

This mystical province, poised for progress, is famous for its delightful contrast between the east & west, the old and new … of tall buildings and nipa hus, of modern streamers and scurrying native boats, of free-wheeling cars and jeepneys.

A heritage and adventure destination in this side of the region, Iloilo prides itself with having the country’s oldest and well-preserved churches, ancestral homes, & other historical landmarks, resplendent festivals, unspoiled coastal communities with pristine beaches and islands.

Iloilo is harnessing the potentials of its strategic location, abundant resources & established facilities to attain revitalized growth.  Centrally located, it serves as the gateway to Southern Philippines and holds an unparalleled advantage of being the hub of trade, commerce and industry.

Agriculture is the principal industry of Iloilo.  Its production of rice, sugar, mongo, fish and other major producs has placed the province among the country’s top agricultural prodcuers.

While Iloilo teems with energy and vibrancy of new developments, the glory of its heritage is stiill evident in its architecture and lives on in the hearts of its people.  Truly, Iloilo is a destination that fulfill your needs, a place for history, business, leisure and one that you could proudly call home.

How To Get Here

Travel by Air: From Manila to Iloilo that takes about an hour. From Cebu to Iloilo its only 35 minutes by plane and 2 hours from Davao and Cotabato.

You can try by Sea: From Manila to Iloilo, sailing time is about 20 hours.From Zamboanga or Cagayan de Oro to Iloilo,about 14 hours and from Cebu to Iloilo, 12 hours. Lastly, Fastcrafts from Bacolod City to Iloilo take 50 minutes.
Another Economical way to travel is nautical highway service by roll-on-roll-off (RORO) vessels fom various parts of the country. Bus terminals are in Ali Mall Cubao, Quezon City and Pasay City.

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Miag-ao Church, Iloilo

Another UNESCO World Heritage Site trip and this is the Miag-ao Church in Iloilo. The starting point of my trip is in Iloilo supermarket which is located at the back of the Robinson Place Iloilo. Beside the Iloilo supermarket you will see the terminal station and you will be riding the jeepney going to Miag-ao (Fare is 60 PHP). The travel time is approximately 1 hour to 1 hour and 30min. The jeepney will just drop you right in front of the church so you don’t need to worry.

I’m really fascinated with the church facade. The yellowish color of the church makes it more attractive.

Miag-ao Church Front ViewMiag-ao Church FacadeMiag-ao Church Front Wall SculptMiag-ao Church SideviewMiag-ao Church WindowMiag-ao ChurchMiag-ao Church Altar

Useful Facts:

The Miag-ao Church was built in 1786 by Spanish Augustinian missionaries and was declared as part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site “Baroque Churches of the Philippines” in 1993. On the front facade, which is flanked by two watchtower belfries, one can see the unique blending of Spanish and native influences.

The central feature of the bas-relief facade is a large coconut tree which reaches almost to the apex. While an integral part of the Philippine landscape, the coconut tree is also the subject of lore. According to an old Philippine legend, the coconut tree was the only bequest from a loving mother to her two children, a tree which sustained them for life. On the church’s facade the coconut tree appears as the “tree of life” to which St. Christopher carrying the Child Jesus on his shoulder is clinging to. The lesser facades feature the daily life of Miagaowanons during the time. Also depicted are other native flora and fauna, as well as native dress.

The church and its watchtowers were also built to defend the town and its people against raids by the Moros. It therefore has thick walls and, reportedly, secret passages. Indeed stretching along the Iloilo coast are defensive towers, but none that equal the size of the Miag-ao. It is because of this defensive purpose that it is sometimes referred to as the Miag-ao Fortress Church.

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San Agustin Church, Manila

I really like the side street of San Agustin Church, Its like your walking in Calle Crisologo in Vigan actually that was the first thing that I notice while walking towards the church. Then there was the façade of the church, as for me it very modern seeing that the church was newly painted I was expecting a brick wall or adobe wall but the other side of the church was something like what I expected. Also along side the church was a mini-museum (entrance is 100PHP for adult).


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Side street of the church

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Facade

The Church is always close they will just open it if there is a mass or wedding. Since I went there for the wedding, so I got a chance to see the beautiful architecture inside. I was so amazed of the beauty and wondering how they preserve it. I love the ceiling of the church, makes me proud of our rich culture.

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View from the main door
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Ceiling
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Altar

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San Agustín Church is a Roman Catholic church under the auspices of The Order of St. Augustine, located inside the historic walled city of Intramuros in Manila. Completed by 1607, it is the oldest church currently standing in the Philippines. No other surviving building in the Philippines has been claimed to pre-date San Agustin Church.

In 1993, San Agustin Church was one of four Philippine churches constructed during during the Spanish colonial period designated by the UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, under the classification “Baroque Churches of the Philippines”. It had been named a National Historical Landmark by the Philippine government in 1976.

History of the church

The present structure is actually the third Augustinian church erected on the site. The first San Agustin Church was the first religious structure constructed by the Spaniards on the island of Luzon. Made of bamboo and nipa, it was completed in 1571, but destroyed by fire in December, 1574 during the attempted invasion of Manila by the forces of Limahong. A second church made of wood was constructed on the site. This was destroyed in February, 1583, in a fire that started when a candle set ablaze the drapes of the funeral bier during the interment of the Spanish Governor-General Gonzalo Ronquillo de Peñalosa. The Augustinians decided to rebuild the church using stone, and to construct as well an adjacent monastery. Construction began in 1586, from the design of Juan Macias. The structure was built using hewn adobe stones quarried from Meycauayan, Binangonan and San Mateo, Rizal. The work proceeded slowly due to the lack of funds and materials, as well as the relative scarcity of stone artisans. The monastery was operational by 1604, and the church was formally declared as completed on January 19, 1607, and named St. Paul of Manila. Macias, who had died before the completion of the church, was officially acknowledged by the Augustinians as the builder of the edifice.

San Agustin Church was looted by the British forces which occupied Manila in 1762 during the Seven Years’ War. It withstood major earthquakes that struck Manila in 1645, 1754, 1852, 1863, and 1880. In 1854, the church was renovated under the supervision of architect Luciano Oliver. On August 18, 1898, the church was the site where Spanish Governor-General Fermin Jaudenes prepared the terms for the surrender of Manila to the United States of America following the Spanish-American War.

During the Japanese occupation of the Philippines during World War II, San Agustin Church was turned into a concentration camp for prisoners. During the final days of the Battle of Manila, hundreds of Intramuros residents and clergy were held hostage in the church by Japanese soldiers; many of the hostages would be killed during the three-week long battle. The church itself survived the bombardment of Intramuros by American and Filipino forces with only its roof destroyed, the only one of the seven churches in the walled city to remain standing. The adjacent monastery however was totally destroyed, and would be rebuilt in the 1970s as a museum under the design of architect Angel Nakpil.

Something to know about the church

San Agustín Church measures 67.15 meters long and 24.93 meters wide. Its elliptical foundation has allowed it to withstand the numerous earthquakes that have destroyed many other Manila churches. It is said that the design was derived from Augustinian churches built in Mexico, and is almost an exact copy of Puebla Cathedral in Puebla, Mexico. The facade is unassuming and even criticized as “lacking grace and charm”, but it has notable baroque touches, especially the ornate carvings on its wooden doors.[5] The church courtyard is graced by several granite sculptures of lions, which had been gifted by Chinese converts to Catholicism.

The church interior is in the form of a Latin cross. The church has 14 side chapels and a trompe-l’oeil ceiling painted in 1875 by Italian artists Cesare Alberoni and Giovanni Dibella. Up in the choir loft are hand-carved 17th-century seats of molave, a beautiful tropical hardwood. The church contains the tomb of Spanish conquistadors Miguel López de Legazpi, Juan de Salcedo and Martín de Goiti, as well as several early Spanish Governors-General and archbishops. Their bones are buried in a communal vault near the main altar. The painter Juan Luna, and the statesmen Pedro A. Paterno and Trinidad Pardo de Tavera are among the hundreds of laypersons whose remains are also housed within the church.

San Agustin Church also hosts an image of Our Lady of Consolation (Nuestra Senora de Consolacion y Correa), which was canonically crowned by Manila Archbishop Cardinal Jaime Sin in 2000.

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Dinagyang

What is Dinagyang?

The Dinagyang is a religious and cultural festival in Iloilo City, Philippines held on the fourth Sunday of January, or right after the Sinulog in Cebu and the Ati-Atihan in Aklan. It is held both to honor the Santo Niño and to celebrate the arrival on Panay of Malay settlers and the subsequent selling of the island to them by the Atis.

Dinagyang began after Rev. Fr. Ambrosio Galindez of a local Roman Catholic parish introduced the devotion to Santo Niño in November 1967. In 1968, a replica of the original image of the Santo Niño de Cebu was brought to Iloilo by Fr. Sulpicio Enderez as a gift to the Parish of San Jose. The faithful, led by members of Confradia del Santo Niño de Cebu, Iloilo Chapter, worked to give the image a fitting reception starting at the Iloilo Airport and parading down the streets of Iloilo.

In the beginning, the observance of the feast was confined to the parish. The Confradia patterned the celebration on the Ati-atihan of Ibajay, Aklan, where natives dance in the streets, their bodies covered with soot and ashes, to simulate the Atis dancing to celebrate the sale of Panay. It was these tribal groups who were the prototype of the present festival.

In 1977, the Marcos government ordered the various regions of the Philippines to come up with festivals or celebrations that could boost tourism and development. The City of Iloilo readily identified the Iloilo Ati-atihan as its project. At the same time the local parish could no longer handle the growing challenges of the festival.

The Dinagyang is divided into three Major events: Ati-Ati Street Dancing, Kasadyahan Street Dancing and Miss Dinagyang.

Today, the main part of the festival consists of a number of “tribes”, called “tribus”, who are supposed to be Ati tribe members dancing in celebration. There are a number of requirements, including that the performers must paint their skin brown and that only indigenous materials can be used for the costumes. All dances are performed to drum music. Many tribes are organized by the local high schools. Some tribes receive a subsidiary from the organizers and recruit private sponsors, with the best tribes receiving the most. The current Ati population of Iloilo is not involved with any of the tribes nor are they involved in the festival in any other way.

Dinagyang was voted as the best Tourism Event for 2006,2007 and 2008 by the Association of Tourism Officers in the Philippines.

The first festival in the world to get the support of the United Nations for the promotion of the Millennium Development Goals.

Cited by the Asian Development Bank as Best Practice on government, private sector & NGO cooperation. (from Wikipedia).

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

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From Dinagyang 2008

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From Dinagyang 2008

From Dinagyang 2008

I really wanted to use my own Dinagyang pictures but my face was all over it so I decided to use pictures from my lovely college professor Ces Maria Amular and you can avail her services by visiting Amular Photography

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Capones Lighthouse, Zambales

My side trip in Capones Island is such an amazing adventure. The first time that I visited a lighthouse was in Macau and from there on I promise my self that I will visit more lighthouse in the future, this is because of the magnificent beauty on top (over looking the whole island, a scenic moment that you only see in postcards).

Capones Island Lighthouse
The light from the Faro de Punta Capones, or Capones Island Lighthouse, has been used for more than a century to search for and guide ships into Subic and Manila Bays. The west coast of Manila has regular runs of shipping heading to and from the Philippines northern neighbors.

The lighthouse is perched 53 m above sea level. The actual lighthouse tower is 15.3m high and the views from up here are sensational.

It took seven (7) years to build the Capones Lighthouse and it went into operation in 1890.

Now a days the lighthouse is in need of some tender loving care, the caretakers house which forms part of the lighthouse structure looks very decrepit and in urgent need of repairs. The light is powered by the sun, with solar cells in charge of ensuring safe passage to passing ships.

If you get out to Capones Island make the effort and climb to the Lighthouse, I know it is a bit of a hike from the beach, but its all worth it.

How do I get to Capones Island?
As I’ve said a while ago Capones Island is just a side trip so you could refer to my trip to Anawangin because we just add a little amount to our boatman(bangkero) just to get into the island. Capones Island does not have any infrastructure, no resorts, no hotels, no shops, just you and the beauty of Capones Island. So I strongly suggest that you should camp on Anawangin because there’s no trees on the shores of Capones Island and you might as well enjoy the beauty of the camping scene in Anawangin.

Entance of the lighthouseEntance of the lighthouse

Front View of the Lighthouse

Front View of the Lighthouse

Front View of the Lighthouse

Front View of the Lighthouse

Front View of the Lighthouse

Front View of the Lighthouse

you can view more pictures on my multiply account  (Multiply accountt)

For affordable tour to Capones Lighthouse you can inquire to Trippers

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Anawangin, Zambales

This is just an overnight trip Itinerary to Anawangin

Day 1

  • Assembly at Victory Liner, you will be riding the bus going to Zambales but your destination is San Antonio (about 1hour – 2hour ride)
  • In San Antonio you can have your early breakfast, lunch, or dinner (depending on your trip) and also you can buy food that you can cook in the market near the bus stop.
  • After that you will take a Trike to Pundaquit beach (about 20min. – 30min ride).
  • From Pundaquit beach you will be riding a boat going to Anawangin.
  • Once you arrive you are now free to relax and explore the place.

Day 2

  • After enjoying the beautiful scenery you are now ready to leave the island? By the way there is no boat on the Island so better ask the boat man to pick you up (anytime you want)so you could go back in Pundaquit beach.
  • (Just a tip)You could also ask the boat man to tour you in any near by island.
  • From Pundaquit beach you will ride again trike goint to San Antonio bus station.
  • San Antonio bus station, again you will be riding any bus going to Manila (Caloocan, Cubao, Pasay Route).

I hope this simple overnight Itinerary going to Anawangin can help you all.

Since there is no resort in the island here are the things that you need:

  • Your food (snacks and you main meal)
  • Personal Drinking Water
  • Tents
  • Stove
  • Cook set
  • Halogen Lamp or whatever you have / Extra Flashlight
  • Batteries
  • Garbage bags. (So we can preserve the island, clean as you go)
  • Camera
  • Soap, Shampoo whatever kikay kit you have
  • Waterproof your things

Expenses: (as of 2008)

P400+ – Round Trip Bus Fare Manila to San Antonio Zambales

P40 – Round Trip Trike Fare San Antonio – Pundaquit Beach

P200+ – Per Person per Boat (4-6pax/boat)(Pundaquit – Anawangin – Pundaquit) more or less this will cost you 800 to 1000.

P1000 approximate expenses for group of 5 (this is what we spent)

Pundaquit Beach

Pundaquit Beach

Anawangin Top View

Anawangin Top View

Other Side of Anawangin

Other Side of Anawangin

For affordable tour to Anawangin you can inquire to Trippers

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Photos

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dinagyang1.jpg





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